Install Plywood Underlayment for Vinyl Flooring - Extreme How To
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In some cases a vapor barrier should be used between the subfloor and the underlayment, particularly for first-floor applications when using particle board underlayment over a subfloor other than exterior-grade plywood.
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If a vapor barrier is not required by code, you need to decide if the subfloor provides protection against moisture. Vapor barriers are usually polyethylene sheets 4 mil or thicker or asphalt-layered kraft paper. Determining the floor break in kitchen areas often requires a careful examination of the cabinet plan. Hold on there, Sawyer—you gotta figure out your floor breaks next.
We use a T-square to mark underlayment sheets for cutting. Look in the drywall tool area to find a good T-square for your underlayment install. Floor breaks are where the vinyl meets the carpet or whatever other flooring is adjacent to the flooring you are preparing to install on your underlayment. The edge of your underlayment is the place where the vinyl and the carpet meet.
If, for example, you are installing vinyl in a bathroom, you will want to make the floor break under the door going into the bathroom. If the door swings into the bathroom, then the floor break will extend into the door opening about 1 inch from the face of the drywall inside the bathroom.
In other words, figure out where the door is and place the edge of the underlayment right under the center of the door panel. There are a few exceptions I make to this floor-break-under-the-door rule. One is in the case of bifold or bypass doors where there is vinyl on one side and carpet on the other. After notching the sheet so the floor break extends into the door opening, you can then layout other cuts as measured inside the walls.
The preferred method for carrying a sheet of underlayment is one hand under and one over. This gives you good control to negotiate hallways and door openings. In the case of a kitchen or bar area, you need to know the cabinet layout so you can make the floor break at the edge of the outside cabinet box.
If there are cabinets on both sides of the opening, plan the floor break to go in a straight line between the outside corners of each of the outside toe kicks. Be careful not to damage walls and tubs as you maneuver sheets into place.
In most cases I begin with the biggest piece I can fit in a room usually a 4-byfoot sheet right in the door opening so you avoid putting seams in the areas that will be walked on most. Keep the piece on plane with the down edge parallel to the wall as you ease the piece into position.
Whenever practical, run the long direction of the underlayment sheets in the opposite direction of the subfloor material so they cross each other. Avoid placing sheets of underlayment in such a way that the seams of the underlayment correspond or line up with the joints in the subfloor. Check the piece for parallel to the walls before tacking it into place. If the floor break takes place in an area other than under a door, I prefer to lay the first sheets along the floor break edge and work back into the vinyl area of the room.
This allows me to cut and fit the smaller pieces against the walls and under the cabinet areas where the tolerances are less demanding. Also, if you start with a nice straight factory edge along a carefully established floor break it will greatly improve the transition between flooring types. After establishing the floor break with the outside piece, add material to the inside of the room to complete the install.
Tolerances Whenever possible, plan your cuts so the factory edges of the underlayment come together, and place the saw-cut edges on the perimeters against the walls. In fact, you can leave gaps the thickness of the base board. Leave a small gap between the underlayment and showers or tubs to avoid squeaks. Floor breaks at door openings should line up with the center of the door itself. Even a little floor flex can cause a squeak where the underlayment rubs these fixtures.
Fastener spacing should be approximately 3 inches on the outside perimeter of each piece. Nailing patterns should be 3 inches on the perimeters and 6 inches in the field. Before nailing off the pieces in the field, drive a few fasteners with plenty of weight near the nailing spot to make sure the underlayment is against the subfloor. This utility room floor break is well behind where the bifold doors will be, so the flooring cannot be seen when the doors are closed.
Proper preparation of the subfloor, careful consideration for floor breaks, tight seams and thorough fastening will ensure that your underlayment will provide a good platform for your sheet vinyl flooring for years to come. Set the saw to cut off the proper amount by measuring to the outside of the saw blade.The Replacements - Alex Chilton
Cordless Advantage One of the biggest advantages to cordless technology is being able to easily take the cutting tool to the room where a tricky piece needs to be cut for installation.
Some underlayment pieces are like jigsaw puzzle pieces, which makes a cordless jigsaw an ideal tool to make the piece fit the puzzle. Starting with a basic rectangular piece, you can mark your measurements directly onto the piece as you take them. This avoids the need to write down measurements or to draw a diagram. Out of Bounds When the center of a toilet drain falls outside of the sheet you are working on, you can extend the layout onto the sheet underneath and anchor your pivot nail there.
Cut out the toilet drain opening with a jigsaw. What About Tile Floor Underlayments? Some tiled floors last for hundreds of years and others start to show cracks after only a few months.
The reason can be best summed up in one word—uncoupling. In recent years many installers have been inappropriately working to create a more secure bond by adhering tiles directly to the subfloor. His recommendations are excellent. Even after the project is done, he is willing to come back any time to fix any inadequacies. We wish him well. Daniel designed my kitchen remodel.
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Ceramic/porcelain Tile vs. Vinyl Tile/Plank: Which Is Best?
He always got back to me in a timely fashion. His contractors are also respectful and helpful and everyone stayed within my budget. I am very pleased with the whole process.
- Install Plywood Underlayment for Vinyl Flooring
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